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Submission + - How Good is that Laptop Under Your Tree? ( 1

buzzardsbay writes: Excited about that new laptop or netbook you bought or got for Christmas? Well, reliability and performance varies by manufacturer. According to SquareTrade, a provider of PC extended warranty services, here's a look at how the major PC brands stack up in reliability.Which one of these 9 major labels is most likely to fail within three years?

Comment You want to do what, now? (Score 1) 2

OK, this list is a lot cooler and more thoughtful than I expected going in. Big fan of the idea of virtualization to get the ridiculously large computer core under control. But call-routing tech to put Uhura out of business? Are you high? I want technology that gets Uhura all up in my bidness as often as possible.

Submission + - Why Star Trek Needs Tech Support ( 2

dasButcher writes: "I'm a big Star Trek fan, and I will even go as far as to call myself a Trekkie. But I couldn't help but think about the technology flaws often found in the Star Trek universe. It seems to me that many of the technologies in our century would make the Enterprise and her crew far more efficient and secure — Check out a few of the things I found in a tech analysis of the Star Trek continuum."

Submission + - Should Microsoft Kill Patch Tuesday? (

buzzardsbay writes: "After five years of Microsoft releasing patches on the second Tuesday of the month, there's evidence that hackers are gaming the release cycle to their advantage. Seems like a good time for Microsoft to change its pattern. As this analysis of the efficacy and shortcomings of Patch Tuesday points out, the program has more or less served its purpose since 2003, when MS instituted it in response to criticism of what had been chaotic and unpredictable security patching. But now, hackers are waiting for Patch Tuesday to see what fixes are released and what remains vulnerable before unleashing new exploit code. The bad guys either release existing exploits or reverse engineer the patch to create an exploit before the fix is widely deployed. A pretty strong argument for shaking up the process."

Submission + - Tech Companies that Won't Survive 2009 (

buzzardsbay writes: "Fresh off their annual market survey, eWEEK channel folks have compiled the list of tech vendors their readers think will fail, falter, or be sold off in 2009. It's important to note that these aren't the opinions of the magazine or its editors. The list comes from folks who work in IT, mostly technology resellers, who are out in the field selling, installing and maintaining this stuff. If there were ever canaries in the tech coal mine, they'd be these service and solution providers who live and die by the slightest shift in the markets. Some of the companieson this list, like Sun and AMD, are shocking because of their size. Others, like CA and Symantec, not so surprising."

Submission + - Recession Pushes IT to Find New Value in Old Gear (

buzzardsbay writes: "Trying to put a bright spin on a gloomy subject, the folks at eWEEK unearth an emerging trend: There's a booming cottage industry of dealers in refurbished computer and networking gear serving folks on the hunt for "slightly used" and "new to you" equipment. The dealers selling the stuff tell eWEEK the equipment is paractically new, most of it less than a year old, and that the prices for things likes servers and routers are lower than they have been since the post dot-com / Sept. 11 days in 2001. Used gear isn't for everybody, obviously. Story points out that while many of these used IT dealers offer configuration services, they don't do installs, and most are not authorized resellers. They do, however, offer decent warranties, so if you can do some of the work yourself, you'll probably be OK."
It's funny.  Laugh.

Submission + - IT Workers Are Getting Fatter (

buzzardsbay writes: While technologies such as virtualization, multi-threading and blade servers have made the data center leaner, those who work there are getting... well... not leaner. According to a new study by, 34 percent of IT workers say they have gained more than ten pounds in their current jobs. A hefty 16 percent say they've gained at least twice that. That's 50 percent putting on weight. The culprits seem to be the stressful-yet-sedentary nature of tech work coupled with our famously poor eating habits. According to the survey, some 41 percent of IT workers eat out for lunch twice or more per week, making portion and calorie control difficult. A pale-looking 11 percent actually buy their lunch out of a vending machine at least once a week.

A Congressman Who Can Code Assembly 421

christo writes "In what appears to be a first, the US House of Representatives now has a Congressman with coding skills. Democratic Representative Bill Foster won a special election this past Saturday in the 14th Congressional District of Illinois. Foster is a physicist who worked at Fermilab for 22 years designing data analysis software for the lab's high energy particle collision detector. In an interview with CNET today, Foster's campaign manager confirmed that the Congressman can write assembly, Fortran and Visual Basic. Will having a tech-savvy congressman change the game at all? Can we expect more rational tech-policy? Already on his first day, Foster provided a tie-breaking vote to pass a major ethics reform bill."

Comment Re:And yet, a five-year study... (Score 1) 5

That may well be true. But the study wasn't refuting the claim that there are security problems. The study refutes the premise in the original post that electronic voting undermines voter confidence. It does not. In fact, despite all its problems, it IMPROVES voter confidence. Reason? Places like Chicago and Boston and New Orleans have been proving for two centuries that paper ballot elections are quite easy to rig.

Submission + - PI License May Be Required for Computer Forensics (

buzzardsbay writes: "The good folks over at Baseline Magazine have an intriguing — and worrisome — report on a movement to limit computer forensics work to those who have Private Investigators' licenses or those who work for licensed PI agencies. According to the story, pending legislation would limit the specialized task of probing deep into computer hard drives, network and server logs for telltale signs of hacking and data theft in the hands of the same people who advertise in the Yellow Pages for surveillance on cheating spouses, workers' compensation fraud and missing persons. Those caught practicing computer forensics without a license could face criminal prosecution, the story adds."
United States

Submission + - Dems Dominate Contributions from Tech Types (

buzzardsbay writes: "Baseline Magazine did a clever slice-and-dice of the federal campaign filings to come up with a list of presidential candidates who get the most money from folks who work in the tech industry. Ron Paul may get a lot of money from online contributors, but it's Hillary and Obama who lead the pack in techie contributions."

Submission + - iPhone Shellcode Hits the Web (

buzzardsbay writes: "Dennis Fisher at Tech Target is reporting that Apple is finally getting a chance to find out what it feels like to walk a mile in Microsoft's shoes. First, a New Jersey teenager published detailed instructions for unlocking the iPhone, and now a well-known security researcher has posted shellcode that can be used on the popular device."
Desktops (Apple)

Submission + - Apple's Woz Has Harsh Words for Open Source (

buzzardsbay writes: In a rollicking interview with eWEEK magazine, Apple guru Steve Wozniak dishes on Jobs, the iPhone and, ultimately, open source, saying: "There's always a group of people that wants to undo the forces of industry that have given us so much in terms of wealth, and there's always people who want things to be free. The open-source movement starts with those sort of people." Woz does concede that open source has "good points that have nothing to do with whether it's free or not." And he was wearing a nixie-tube watch, so how much can you really dislike him?

Submission + - Microsoft continues to amass security brain trust (

buzzardsbay writes: "The good folks at Information Security Magazine are reporting that Microsoft recently poached Jakub Kaminski, one of CA's more talented and well-regarded antivirus researchers, along with three of his colleagues from CA's Australian lab. In the last year or so, Microsoft has made waves in the anti-malware community by hiring some of the top talent in the industry away from competitors such as Symantec Corp. and McAfee Inc. Is this an effort to improve their security efforts or silence their critics?"

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